This video shows the ‘spectacular’ findings during repairs to Chester’s Northgate.

A Roman gate tower and medieval masonry have been unearthed by archaeologists investigating the city walls although they remain hidden beneath the scaffolding and wrapping for now.

Work on the steps began in April 2016, but its completion has now been pushed back indefinitely.

CWaC director of place operations Maria Byrne said: “Following the careful dismantling of the steps, it became clear that major parts of the historic city walls have also been destabilised.

“There is no threat to safety but the use of substantial propping to secure them has allowed archaeologists to access and investigate the lower reaches of the city wall foundations.

“The findings have been quite unexpected and spectacular.”

Amazing footage shows how Chester's Northgate Street once looked

Structural instability meant the early 19th century Northgate steps have been propped up since 2011.

Foundations for the Roman tower were discovered six months into the work. It is believed to have been the main gateway to the Deva fortress.

Huge foundation stones that formed part of the northern entrance to the Roman fortress have been uncovered by archaeologists during repairs to the Northgate steps that lead up to the City Walls.

There is also evidence a 1st century timber gate stood there beforehand.

After the Romans left, it then housed a gaol before it was replaced by its current neo-classical structure in the early 19th century.

All alterations are being done under the eye of Historic England.

Ms Byrne said: “Little was previously known about the four gates on each side of Chester’s Roman fortress and any surviving evidence is considered vitally important.

“Imaginative ways of displaying the Roman tower remains are now being explored.

A chamber discovered at Northgate steps in Chester

“As a protected scheduled monument, all alterations and repair work have to be carried out under the guidance of Historic England.

“The meticulous work and monitoring required takes time but it is essential that our precious city walls are maintained for generations to come.”

In the past few months, businesses on the walls have raised their concerns the work was costing them trade.

Pemberleys gift shop has since announced its closure and its owner Emma Laverick said they had not received enough council support.

CWaC denied this and added at no point had access to businesses been denied because of the work.

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